It’s good to see the good guys win

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In January 2011, some friends of mine were heading to the National Western Stock Show Rodeo in Denver, and their little cowboy, Cade, wanted to meet some big cowboys.

Chet Johnson
Chet Johnson

I looked at the roster of contestants who would be competing at the Denver Coliseum that performance to see if any of my friends could help this little rodeo fan live to be a lifetime rodeo fan. When I saw the name of Chet Johnson, I knew my search had ended. Chet and two of his great friends and awesome cowboys, Cort Scheer and world champion Chad Ferley, met with Cade Hemphill and his family before the rodeo that day.

On Saturday night, Johnson picked up one of the biggest wins of his career, clinching the saddle bronc riding title at the San Antonio Stock Show Rodeo with an 86-point ride on Calgary Stampede’s Knight Rocket. In all, Johnson won $19,077, third most of all competitors. That will put him in the top 10 in the world standings.

More importantly, it’s another win for a cowboy who suffered a serious injury less than two years ago, when he was kicked in the back of the head by a bucking horse near Salt Lake City. He sustained three skull fractures, bleeding and swelling on the brain and a fractured right eardrum. He came back to rodeo less than six months later.

Chet is a three-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier, and I look for him to return to that stage soon. He hasn’t played there since 2008, but the good guys always make a comeback.

2012 San Antonio Stock Show Rodeo champions
Bareback Riding – Steven Dent, Mullen, Neb., $17,030
Steer Wrestling – Ethen Thouvenell, Napa, Calif., $17,112
Team Roping – Nick Sartain, Dover, Okla., header, $19,323
Team Roping – Kollin VonAhn, Durant, Okla., heeler, $19,323|
Saddle Bronc Riding – Chet Johnson, Sheridan, Wyo., $19,077
Tie-Down Roping – Justin Maass, Giddings, Texas, $17,358
Women’s Barrel Race – Angie Meadors, Blanchard, Okla., $18,340
Bull Riding – Cody Teel, Kountze, Texas, $16,475


Comments (3)
Karla Hemphill / February 26, 2012

WAY TO GO CHET!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ted, Cade was able to meet up agian in January at the National Western to visit with Cade prior to the rodeo. We are able to watch and cheer as Chet rode War Eagle, I remember the name of the horse because Cade makes us announce him as Chet riding War Eagle every evening as he rides his stick horse in our living room! Yes, Chet is a good guy, both kind and compassionate…two years in a row taking time out to visit with Cade. But, Chet is also our son’s hero and model, and Chet has a huge fan in Cade.
Ya gotta love it when good guys win! Congrats, Chet!!!

Ted Harbin / February 26, 2012

Thanks, Karla. I’m glad to see that. If Chet makes the NFR, you guys will have to take in a performance or two. Just start making plans to be in Vegas in December.

Ruth Zohner / February 26, 2012

Congratulations Chet!!! You have made rodeo up close and personal for us ever since we met you at the Denver Stock Show. from Cade’s grandma and grandpa


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